When Brad was released from jail, he lived in a car. He first came to YSM for emergency food assistance and learned that regular hot meals are provided several times a week. When he visited YSM Christian Community Centre for the meals, he found an accepting attitude and people who were interested in him and his life. YSM counsellors took the time to speak with him on how to deal with his low self-esteem and anger issues and he soon had hope for change. YSM Housing Services found him a space in a shelter and later helped him move into standard housing. And he received continued support as he worked to get his General Education Diploma (GED), dealt with legal issues and learned key life skills. Today, Brad is employed and says, “YSM staff showed me they were on my side. They worked hard for me when I was ready to take the next step. I really didn’t think my life could change to this level.”
Adults who live with chronic poverty often struggle to overcome multiple disadvantages. These include:
These issues, either individually or combined, create barriers to living a more productive and fulfilled life. People become trapped by what they don’t know, by poor social skills that create distance, and by systems that often slow progress. All of this can rob people of hope.